Our Impact

Success Stories

Success Stories


Turi is a machine learning and AI startup acquired by Apple in August of 2016. The company began as an open-source project at Carnegie Mellon in 2009 under Carlos Guestrin’s guidance. In 2012, he joined the University of Washington’s Department of Computer Science & Engineering (now known as the Paul G. Allen School of Computer Science & Engineering) when Amazon founder Jeff Bezos provided $2 million to endow two professorships in machine learning at the UW for Guestrin and his wife, Emily Fox. Guestrin later spun off the open-source project from the UW into its own company. As he developed his startup, it joined CoMotion Labs where we supported its growth through our various programs. The recent $1,000,000 endowed professorship in AI and machine learning by Guestrin to the UW is a great example of how our investments in startups come back full circle to the UW.

PvP Biologics

The company was officially founded in 2012, but we were able to stay at the university and incubate. I want to sincerely thank CoMotion for all their hard work in getting our license through.
— Ingrid Swanson Pultz, PvP Biologics

PvP Biologics is a UW spinout that is developing an oral enzyme for the treatment of celiac disease which affects an estimated 2.4 million Americans. The technology was invented over the course of five years by Ingrid Swanson and David Baker at the University of Washington’s Institute for Protein Design. They recently announced a $35 million agreement with Takeda Pharmaceutical to advance its therapy for the disease. Located continuously in CoMotion Labs, PvP Biologics is giving back through their contribution to the economic development of Washington state.


C-SATS is a performance management system for healthcare professionals to assess and improve as individuals and teams continuously, accurately and objectively. The  technology startup was acquired by Johnson & Johnson on April 5, 2018.

CoMotion helped the startup move from idea to impact by lending expertise on licensing and supporting team formation as well as providing funding through the CoMotion Innovation Gap Fund and STEP.

Learn more about C-SATS: http://www.csats.com

Universal Cells

Universal Cells, the biotech startup, was acquired by Japanese firm Astellas Pharma in February.

Astellas will gain Universal Cells’ proprietary Universal Donor Cell technology to create cell therapy products that do not require Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) matching, potentially overcoming a huge treatment challenge by reducing the risk of rejection. The technology genetically alters stem cells so that they can be used by anyone, instead of patients needing to use their own stem cells or find donor stem cells with matching biomarkers.

Since the idea’s inception in 2011, CoMotion has helped to advance technologies developed by UW Professor David Russell. These efforts included assistance and guidance on an SBIR grant application, a Commercialization Fellowship to gather potential customer feedback, funding to the UW project (prior to startup formation) for a comprehensive market analysis, introductions to CoMotion mentors, the filing and managing of several distinct patent families, and the negotiation of the exclusive licensing agreement with Universal Cells in 2014.

Learn more about Universal Cells: http://www.universalcells.com/